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CHOKER #70 by Mary Lee Hu, of eighteen karat gold, twenty-two karat gold, 1985. Photographs by Patrick R. Benesh-Liu. Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Jewelry Arts

The Donna Schneier Collection




Donna Schneier possesses one of the most widely assembled selections of twentieth-century contemporary studio jewelry to have been donated to a public institution.While there are several famous collections of jewelry that have ended up as the focus for exhibitions around both the globe and the United States, few have the breadth and inclusion of notable contemporary jewelers as does Schneier’s.

The array of jewelry on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exhibition, showing through August 31, is international in scope, and reflects Schneier’s keen eye for selecting pieces for posterity, as well as glimpses into her own personal taste. Schneier is a proselytizer for contemporary jewelry, and believes that it is good and necessary to develop a collection for the public’s enrichment, enlightening people to the seminal developments and keystone artists of the contemporary jewelry movement. Her careful hand in this process can be simplified into two basic categories that seem to permeate the show. Notable contemporary and extraordinary jewelers, such as Hiroko Sato-Pijanowski and Eugene Pijanowski, David Watkins, Thomas Gentille, Kiff Slemmons, Bob Ebendorf, and John Iversen, have characteristic pieces of their work on display. For the Pijanowskis, a breathtaking, nigh surreal golden broadcollar composed of mizuhiki (Japanese paper cord) threads epitomizes their rambunctious style.






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